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I have been interested in nature for most of my life but since I retired I spend as much time as I can exploring the nature reserves and wildlife hotspots of my adopted home, Dorset in southern England. Whilst out I record what I see and take snaps where I can (I am no photographer!) and that forms the basis of my Nature of Dorset website. When I find something new I like to research it and write about it in my nature notes, it is how I learn and hopefully you might find my notes helpful as well!

This website is for the people of Dorset interested in wildlife and for people from elsewhere interested in the wildlife of Dorset!

14 June, 2016

Hounds Tongue: the roast beef plant

There are a few plants that are quite rare in the United Kingdom but that we have here in Dorset, especially along the coastal cliffs and the Purbeck Ridge. hound's-tongue (Cynoglossum officinale) is one of those plants. It can be found along the coast here in Dorset but uncommon in other parts of the country and the Dorset Environmental Records Centre is actively collecting records of this plant which is an indication as to its status.
A member of the borage family hound's-tongue is also known as the roast beef plant as it supposedly smells like roast beef when rubbed but I have never made the connection! My field guide says it smells like mice and having had mice in our garage most winters I could go along with that description.
Although it is an untidy plant it has lovely maroon flowers that were not quite out when I took this photo.
Hounds Tongue: the roast beef plant